Lead Responsibility: As Executive Director, Linda is responsible for leading LearningWorks. She sets the strategic direction and oversees all aspects of the organization and its initiatives. Linda serves as chief spokesperson and leads LearningWorks’ state and national community college policy efforts.
Areas of concentration: Overall educational reform, community college and workforce policy issues; career pathway and developmental education acceleration strategies. Liaison/policy advisor to: philanthropic organizations; the Foundation for California Community Colleges; state agencies including the California Community College system office; other segments of education; business/industry/labor partnerships; the legislature; community organizations; researchers; policy groups; and other partners.
Experience: Linda Collins has extensive experience with educational and workforce development policy, having worked closely with the Board of Governors for the California Community Colleges (CCC) to develop the statewide Ladders of Opportunity policy initiative and the large-scale Career Advancement Academy (CAA) demonstration project designed to connect underprepared and underemployed young adults to high wage career pathways.
Linda taught sociology and interdisciplinary studies at Los Medanos College in Pittsburg, CA for over 15 years. She served two terms as President of the Academic Senate for California Community Colleges and was the founding director of the Inter-segmental Major Preparation Articulated Curriculum (IMPAC), a major initiative to improve articulation across the segments of higher education in California. Linda is the past chair of the national Committee on Community Colleges of the American Association of University Professors and served on its national Committee on Academic Freedom.
Linda is frequently asked to consult on state and national policy efforts. Most recently she has served on: the Bay Area Manufacturing Renaissance Council; the Leadership Council of the National Skills Coalition; California Tomorrow’s Community College Advisory Board; and the Consumer-Directed Services Network (CDSN) Board. Linda serves as an expert advisor to the California Department of Education’s Adult Education Strategic Planning Initiative, and is a member of the California team for the federal Policies to Performance initiative, focused on the development of effective state policies to support college and career transitions for low-skilled adults and adult learners.
Linda is a founding member of the California EDGE Campaign, a non-partisan coalition—including business, labor, community colleges, workforce boards and social justice organizations—focused on policy change and systems alignment to improve the state’s workforce development system. Linda is also a founding director of LearningWorks, a new center for linking knowledge, policy and practice in order to improve student achievement in the California Community Colleges.